Category Archives: Dreams & Goals

Memorial Day and Living Your Soul Prospering Life

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It’s scary to pursue your Soul Prospering Life because it’s probably following dreams that you left behind in childhood or young adulthood.   Your loved ones might laugh; your friends might look at you like you’ve lost it.  You might think you’re being frivolous and childish.

For a moment, think about the people who can’t pursue their Soul Prospering Life.  They can’t pursue theirs because they sacrificed it so you could live your Soul Prospering Life. 

So, if you’re having trouble taking that next step, worried about what others might say, fearful that you’ll look foolish, stop for a moment. 

Just stop. 

Don’t let the people we’re remembering this Memorial Day have died in vain.

Go for it.  Live your Soul Prospering Life.  You can do it!

Your Friend and Pep Pal,

Lauren

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3 Steps to Begin Again

Has this every happened to you:

You’re excited about a goal.  You start off with lots of energy and enthusiasm.  Things are going great!  But then, you hit a rough patch going toward your goal and you become stuck, or it’s taking longer than you thought and it’s harder than you expected so you lose hope, or life just gets in the way.

The next thing you know, weeks have gone by—perhaps even months—and you haven’t done anything toward achieving your goal.

It’s embarrassing, discouraging, and perhaps you feel some shame.

It’s happened to me more times than I care to admit.  In fact, it happened to me just this month. 

You probably noticed that I posted on this blog on May 1st.  I had every intention of posting once per week.  Almost immediately, though, my personal life went sideways.  Now three weeks later, I’m finally posting again.

Oy.

Here are three steps that have helped me get back to my goals and I hope they can help you, too:

 

Step #1: 

Remind yourself what you’ll feel like once your goal is achieved—really get into the feelings and let your imagination go. 

For instance, you’ll feel really good about yourself;

you’ll be happier and this will make you a better partner, colleague, and friend;

you’ll be more likely to go for other goals and dreams—bigger ones and make even more of an impact.

 

Step #2: 

When doing Tip #1, write down the feelings and images that really inspire and excite you. 

Put them on sticky notes around your house, in your car, and other spaces where you’ll see them often. 

Make them into a background for your phone and computer. 

Set them as reminders on your phone so they’ll pop up throughout your day.

 

Step #3: 

Take the next step RIGHT NOW!  Choose an easy thing you can do RIGHT NOW that will move you forward toward your goal.  What baby step can you take? 

Perhaps it’s continuing to journal about what makes you so excited and enthusiastic about your goal, thus building your motivation to go for it. 

Perhaps it’s preparing tonight for your day ahead tomorrow thus increasing the likelihood you’ll be on top of your game rather than behind the 8-ball. 

Maybe it’s a quick email to your accountability partners.

Keep it simple.  Keep it easy.  Keep it fun. 

If you do this, you will find that in no time at all you’ll be steaming ahead toward your goal!

All the while, keep saying to yourself “Yes I can!  Yes I can!”

You got this!  I believe in you!

You’re Friend and Pep Pal,

Lauren

Happy May Day

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May Day is filled with hope and a world that’s fresh and new, at least in the Northern Hemisphere.  Take time today to revel in Mother Nature’s beauty, whether it’s springtime where you are or if it’s autumn, enjoy the natural wonders around you.

Happy May Day!

Your Friend and Pep Pal,

Lauren

More Quotes on Breathing

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I hope at least one of these quotes inspires you and supports your new practice of slow, deep, gentle breathing.

 

Every day is a new beginning. Take a deep breath. Smile, and start again. – Author Unknown

Deep breaths are like little love notes to your body. – Author Unknown

Change your breathing, change your life. – Author Unknown

Remember, as long as you are breathing it’s never too late to start a new beginning. – Author Unknown

As you waste your breath complaining about life, someone out there is breathing their last. Appreciate what you have. – Author Unknown

Breathe in the good shit. Breathe out the bullshit. – Author Unknown

You’ll never really see how toxic someone is until you breathe fresher air. – Author Unknown

Focusing on the act of breathing clears the mind of all daily distractions and clears our energy enabling us to better connect with the Spirit within. – Author Unknown

Deep breathing brings deep thinking and shallow breathing brings shallow thinking. – Author Unknown

Breathe, it’s just a bad day, not a bad life. – Author Unknown

Inhale the future, exhale the past. – Author Unknown

Just breathe. – Author Unknown

 

I hope you found at least one quote that you like.  Keep it handy and refer to it often.  And keep breathing slowly, deeply, and gently! 

Enjoy!

Please forward this post to your friends and family.  Thank you!

Your Friend and Pep Pal,

Lauren

 

 

Optimum Times for Your Breathing Practice

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Experts will tell you that first thing in the morning and last thing at night are excellent times for a breathing practice. This is because the conscious mind is quiet at these times, making the subconscious easier to access.

I agree with this.   However, I’ve found that any time is a good time to take a moment and do your breathing practice!

Here are times when I pause to breathe slowly, deeply, and gently:

  • during rush hour traffic!!!!
  • when there is a lot of pressure at work;
  • when co-workers, friends, family, loved ones are getting on my nerves;
  • when I feel overwhelmed, scattered, and don’t know what to do next;
  • when I’m worried, anxious, or fretting over something;
  • when I’m sad (it helps me process the sadness and understand where it’s coming from)
  • when I’m angry or frustrated or feeling impatient;
  • when I’m disappointed or feeling discouraged….

I find that when I take 5 minutes to do a slow, deep, gentle breathing practice I gain control of my emotions. I can take a longer view of situations and feel more hopeful about my options. I may still have uncomfortable feelings but they are no longer running the show. I can experience them without being steamrolled by them.

Turn to your breathing practice the next time you’re feeling out of sorts. Let me know how it works out for you.

Please share this post with your friends and loved ones. Thank you!

Your Friend and Pep Pal,

Lauren

Quotes on the Power of Breath by Thich Nhat Hanh

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Here are some quotes from Thich Nhat Hanh that underscore the importance of slowly, deeply, gently breathing:

 

Breath is the bridge which connects life to consciousness, which unites your body to your thoughts. Whenever your mind becomes scattered, use your breath as the means to take hold of your mind again.

 

 Whenever we are carried away by our thinking, when we are overwhelmed by strong emotions, or when our minds are restless and dispersed, we can return to our breathing.

 

Your breathing should flow gracefully, like a river, like a water snake crossing the water, and not like a chain of rugged mountains or the gallop of a horse. To master our breath is to be in control of our bodies and minds. Each time we find ourselves dispersed and find it difficult to gain control of ourselves by different means, the method of watching the breath should always be used.

 

 Anger is like a storm rising up from the bottom of your consciousness. When you feel it coming, turn your focus to your breath.

 

It’s like when you’re flying in an airplane. Whenever severe turbulence comes along, the seatbelt keeps you from getting thrown around the cabin. Mindful breathing is your seatbelt in everyday life—it keeps you safe here in the present moment. If you know how to breathe, how to sit calmly and quietly, how to do walking meditation, then you have your seatbelt and you’re always safe.

 

Breathing mindfully, you are already finding a refuge in your breath, and you become aware of what’s going on in your body, your feelings, your perceptions, your mental formations, and your consciousness. 

 

Let me know which of these quotes are your favorites.  Leave your thoughts in the comments section below.  Thank you!

Please share this post with your friends and family.  Thank you!

Your Friend and Pep Pal,

Lauren

 

Breathing Slow and Easy

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Sometimes we get ourselves all gummed up about the things we want to do. We over-think them and make them way more complicated than they need to be.

 

Is this how you’re feeling–frustrated because this seems to hard and is too much to handle? I know I’ve caught myself nearly hyperventilating because I was thinking too much about breathing into my diaphragm then into my lungs and trying to really fill them all the way up to the tippy top.

Oy!

I had to remind myself that all we’re intending to do with this breathing exercise is to slow down and to allow the breath to come into and out of our bodies gently and naturally.   When we slow down, we relax (at least a little bit!). When we relax our muscles aren’t constricting our torsos and abdomens and our bodies can then naturally breathe deeper.

This isn’t about forcing air in or forcing it out. It isn’t about filling our lungs so full that we feel as if we’ll pop!

Slow and easy.   That’s what it’s all about.

Take 5 minutes right now to sit quietly, relax your chest and neck, and slowly, gently, allow the air to come into your body. Then slowly and gently allow the air to leave your body. Repeat this sequence for 5 minutes. I’ll bet you’ll feel better afterward!

Let me know in the comments below! Thanks!

Feel free to forward this post to a friend or loved one. Thank you!

Your gently and slowly breathing Friend and Pep Pal,

Lauren

Breathing Slowly and Deeply: Why are we doing this??

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If you truly want to craft your very own soul prospering life, the first step is slowing down and breathing.

 

As I mentioned in the May Day post, there are many physiological and psychological benefits to putting aside as little as 5 minutes to breathe deeply and slowly. 

A more important reason, though, is to FINALLY hear your True Self think!

Your True Self has been talking to you all along through your intuition, gut reactions, emotions, and even your aches and pains.  Slowing down and breathing deeply helps you calm the part of you that’s attached to the outer world so that your inner world finally has a chance to be heard!  And listened to, and FOLLOWED!

Yes, it’s that simple to finally hear your True Self.

And that’s the whole point of breathing slowly and deeply. 

Enjoy it!

Please share this post with your loved ones and friends, or with someone that you think might benefit by it.  Thank you!

Your Friend and Pep Pal,

Lauren

Time to Breathe

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5 minutes. That’s all it takes.

Today, gift yourself with a few moments to sit quietly and breathe.

Let your body relax for a few moments. Let your muscles unfurl and allow your bones and skeleton to do its work and hold you up.   If you are sitting or lying down, allow the chair or bed to support you and hold your weight. Your body, your muscles, tendons, ligaments, can all let go and relax.

Now, take a long slow deep breath in. Allow the air to come into your lungs rather than forcing it in. How ever the air is coming into your body on the intake is just fine.

Now, allow that breath to slowly leave your lungs. How ever it leaves your body is just fine. If you can expel deeply, getting out all the old, stale air at the bottom and the edges of your lungs, then that is fine.   If not, that is fine, too.

How ever you are slowly and deeply breathing in and slowly and deeply breathing out is just fine.

Relax.

You’re doing it right!

 

 

Breathe in long, slow, and deep.

Now breathe out as slowly and deeply as you can.

 

Breathe in long, slow, and deep.

Now breathe out as slowly and deeply as you can.

 

Breathe in long, slow, and deep.

Now breathe out as slowly and deeply as you can.

 

 

Do this for at least 5 minutes. It’s fine to do this longer but even just 5 minutes is amazingly beneficial.

Enjoy! Have fun with this! You are doing it just right!

Your Friend and Pep Pal,

Lauren

May Day: Breathe Deep and Slow

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Happy May Day!

Here in the Northern Hemisphere Spring is in full swing. Flowers are everywhere, trees and shrubs are blooming, and pale green leaves are gently unfurling, ready for a new year. It’s a perfect time to breathe deeply and slowly.

We don’t breathe enough.   Or, I should say, we don’t pay attention to how we breathe. Most of us are shallow breathers, never really filling our lungs and oxygenating our systems.

Our breath cleans and refreshes our bodies. It calms our minds and nervous systems. It helps revitalize and rejuvenate our cells.

Join me this month in regularly taking a few moments to slow down and breathe.

Thank you!

Your Friend and Pep Pal,

Lauren